Saturday, 27 August 2005

Wool Masher Monthly

Isn't that a great name for a magazine? If I weren't so busy fighting crime while weaing spandex in my spare time I'd probably start it up. But then I would only make another million and lose it after having my heart broken by an unscrupulous nogooddirtydawg.

So here we go, in this first and only edition of Wool Masher Monthly.

Have had a busy day over he old dye pot. Or saucepan. You see, dude, that's the good thing about koolaid - it's nontoxic so you can change the colour of your old grey pants without needing to keep a special saucepan for it. Not that that is what I was doing. Oh dear me no.
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So here is what we started off with - 300g of superwash wool all together. 100g each of white, aran cream and pale heathery green. All soaked and in 50g skeins.
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Here is what we ended up with at the half way point. One of the green ones suspended over 'grape' and the two white skeins half in and out of 'lemon and lime' and 'cherry'. I love that cherry red colour.
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And what happened to the two aran skeins? Well....I thought I would try something Nickerjac showed me about sprinkling the dye onto wet wool then steaming it. Except this is koolaid not proper dye and it didn't exactly work. There were a number of obstacles to be overcome.
  1. The only colours I had left were ones I hadn't used before so I wasn't sure of the colours that would come out.
  2. The wool wasn't wet enough.
  3. The koolaid doesn't have the same permeating powers as dye.
Here is me trying to overcome obstacle three.
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Yes folks, it's a potato masher. It came to me as if in a dream. It didn't work but it made me laugh for a while.

Anyway after about 2 hours of fidgeting about here is what I ended up with, drying off.
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The grape and green. I'm liking the colours.
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The cherry and lime. This one I really love.
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The 'what-the-hell-dude' that obviously didn't work that well.

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Does everyone else own a copy of this book. If not you seriously need to. This woman, this goddess amongst women, is the bees knees. I located the joining technique I was after and socks....socks abounded. My cup runeth over with socks. (You know I'm going to have to abbreviate this episode of Wool Masher Monthly as Pooch is getting the hump with me tapping away while we watch 'Enter the Dragon')

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This is the complete pair I am wearing as my fingers strum the keyboard.
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These are some for christmas presents.
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And then there's these.

OK, Pooch severaly miffed now. Got to go my sweets x

Friday, 26 August 2005

Crimes against Jumpers


The formatting toolbar isn't working at the moment so I can't make this a link but copy and paste only when sitting down - this one is a baddy.

Plans for the weekend anyone? Personally I have dying on my mind. No, not a return to the bad old days but with Koolaid! Hooray for koolaid! I bought a load of superwash merino yesterday and plan to have my wicked way with it tomorrow. You see I am in a sock knitting frenzy and have been furiously knitting one pair that need sewing up, half of a regia 6-ply jacquard, 2/3 of a regia 4-ply stripey which I realise I have been knitting on one 2.25 and one 3.25 needle (i.e. one of each) since forgetting to substitute the second needles after finishing the first 5 rows of rib. I am now part way down the foot. Doh! I kept thinking the fabric seemed a little on the firm side.

3 whole days. 3 days! Yay. Oh I forgot to blog yesterday - but at lunchtime during a 'kung fu physics' demo I chopped a block of wood in half with my bare hand. It was terribly exciting and I have hardly stopped talking about it since. Really made me feel I had achieved something.

Have given up on the making-a-backpack idea and am instead focussed on the waiting-for-it-to-be-delivered-from-ebay idea instead. A bog standard pale blue one for a fiver which should be slightly better for me.

Do you know I feel far too doolally to actually write anything else coherent here. Sorry peeps - I'm off!

Wednesday, 24 August 2005

Eye candy part 2

Thanks for the comments and suggestions people - although there is one I want to discuss with you. Nick from CSI. Now Nick you would have thought meets my criteria - beefy, dark hair, fairly chisseled but NO! There is something just a little bit pathetic about him so on my list he will not go. Warwick you're talking. So to continue...
  • Warrick from CSI - yeah I could have found out his real name but that really isn't the point here you know. Just look and enjoy.
  • Johnny Depp - believe me the king of kings was only left off through lack of time before. I actually found the whole pirate thing very attractive but hell you know. I'm now thinking this list is starting to reveal too much about me.
  • The Rock - can you tell what he's cooking?Yep, another buff wrestler but this one acts too!
  • Ok this really is quite shallow. Enough said I reckon.

Tuesday, 23 August 2005

Eye candy

Is that a derogatory title? I just mean these people are lovely to look at.

  • Tom Ward - Silent Witness plus a voice to go all crinkly about.
  • Keanu Reeves - obviously
  • John Cena - WWE wrestling champion and badass
  • Pooch - image to follow
  • Angelina Jolie - as a straight woman I am not ashamed to say I fancy Angelina Jolie. But I never knew how hard it was to find a picture of her with her clothes on.

To be continued.....


I went and bobbed about in a flotation tank last night in London Bridge called Floatworks. I've never done that before and the experience was very worthwhile although I didn't manage to switch off that much. I do feel much more relaxed generally though today so I'll see whether that lasts.

In other news Pooch has taken to wearing his red hat...and nothing else....around the house. I thought about posting a picture and then thought how many of you it would upset and decided against.

Told my boss yesterday that I was going to do this other job and he was rather annoyed. He kept saying he wasn't annoyed with me and it was a great opportunity for me but..... He ended by advising me not to let Sean get away with it cheaply and to insist the MBA was from Cranfield or London Business School and on a massive payrise.

I've done a two needle sock in the variegated brown mercerised cotton I bought at the weekend. A lot of people think it's too rough for socks but I'm ok with it. I'm trying it out too as I quite fancy it for a jumper and this is a good way of swatching on a large scale and really trying it out. I feel I might be entering another sock knitting phase (on 2 needles of course) so it's a good time to start bashing out the xmas presents. When I was with Lucy and Lou they both complained I had never knitted them anything and Freddie started in too. Freddie has now been going out with Becky for 8 months so I think she might be a fixture for some time to come - better find out how big her feet are too.

So sorry no pictures this time....the SkipNorth website is almost ready though so if you want to be told when it goes live email me at It's going to be a wicked holiday!

Sunday, 21 August 2005

The stitch is back (long post alert)

Dude....have I ever not blogged for this long? Goes to show the action/illness packed week I've been having I guess.

The headaches are finally subsiding. I think it probably was sinusitus so many thanks to Nickerjac for the sinutab tip. I still have a session booked in a flotation tank for Monday though (thanks Yvonne!) which I am really looking forward to. I'm also thinking it might be time to get my eyes tested again (thanks Nikki). In fact thanks everyone for all your suggestions.

So finally I have had some time for some prepare to be bombarded with pictures. First up we have a swtch for the pinky hat using my handspun. The yarn is red with red sequins so I thought it would look best on a red background (dur).
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Pooch chose his red yarn and the life aquatic hat just needs sewing up now. Here he is modelling the wip!
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It's very simple 2x2 rib and I basically did it yesterday on the train down to canterbury and back.

Canterbury was very good. I was there to see my little-ist sister Freddie who is now a whopping 17, and my two best friends Lucy (left) and Louise (right).
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We were best friends at school and are still really close now. Freddie and her girlfriend Becky were there too but Freddie doesn't do photos at all. It's such a shame because she's really pretty and it makes me feel so proud to see the family resemblance (we share Dad A) but then I hated pictures when I was younger so I can understand why. The 5 of us had lunch together and it made me the *happiest* person ever. This is going to sound all gushy but it was like we were 'proper' sisters with her hanging out with my mates and me hanging out with her and hers. The two of us sat next to each other and everyone was laughing and joking was just wicked. God I am sad but I don't care! It was really really good. After lunch Freddie, Becky and I headed for the shops where I was relying on them to help me look cool and regain my lost youth but frankly they were rubbish at that so I bought a jumper I first saw 3/4 years ago and a t-shirt with 'Hurley' written on it. Is this good? Answers on a postcard to me please. I like it anyway. I feel also that the general opinion was that anything was better than the star trek t-shirt I ws wearing. But come on, cut me some slack, I have a physics degree. There's only so far one can get away from that fact before it all bounces back at you!

One place I did drag them to was 'Jems' by the cathedral gates.
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Jems has had a 'cool' makeover (not that the shop has changed at all in the last 50 years - it's just the stock) and are now carrying needle fleting kits plus things for scrapbookers. Despite queries from Becky along the lines of "How long can you need to spend in a sewing shop?" (I know, she needs showing 'the way of the yarn') I only bought 3 balls plus added a skein of variegated viscose to the embroidery threads and silk I bought at Liberty the other day.
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The sunbeam St ives is something I have't seen before but was in C&H Fabrics as well. Perhaps a kent brand?

I also managed one or two other little purchases for use with spinning.
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The flowers are one of those fake hawaiin garlands that I wil occasionally include one of in another creation.

So basically an awesome day. I sat down with Pooch in the evening and pulled out the kaffe fasset vneck which was beginning to resemble a ufo rather than a wip. It is now definitely a wip although I have done something that some people might think of as 'wong'. Cause what happened right was I started the front with the fairisle pattern and it's quite complicated. And I was bemoaning this at goldres green when, I believe it was, Jane suggested I make the back simpler and do it in stripes. I feel sure I've posted about this before in the distant past but the result can be seen here:
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I've been doing it quite randomly and I like it - plus it makes a nice break from the fairisle every now and again.

So what does today hold? Well it's raining (I prefer this to the sun but don't tell anyone that) so I guess I'll be hanging out indoors. Fortunately there is knitting to be done and maybe some spinning and there is Pooch to snuggle up to. There is also the provisionally titled SKIP North to be organised - this is what I have been hinting at recently (SKIP = spinnign and knitting in public). A weekend extravaganza at Haworth in Yorkshire next Feb where 30 spinners and knitters will come together to share, learn and enhance stash through specially organised workshops and shopping trips. Nickerjac and I are trying to keep the costs down as low as possible and it looks like we might be able to do it for about £100 including all meals, 2 nights accom and luxury coach hire and materials. I have been crafting the website so I'll let you know the address as soon as it's sorted.

Phew right I think that's my lot for now!
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